3 Psychological benefits of owning a dog

Posted by on August 14, 2016 in Feat, Health & Wellness | Comments Off on 3 Psychological benefits of owning a dog

3 Psychological benefits of owning a dog

There is a reason why the human brain is at the top of one’s head. It is because the human brain must be treated with utmost care. Not only does the human brain make people different from the rest of the animal kingdom, it also functions in ways one cannot imagine. This is the reason why it is imperative that people take care of their mental health, as well as to provide the necessary aspects from which the brain can be so much more.

doggy doctor

Various activities can induce good mental health. Exercising one’s mind through crosswords and chess can actually make the brain function at the optimum and fend away psychological problems. Overall, continuous utility of the mind in these types of activities help make it stay sharp and ready, which is one of the primary facets of a healthy brain.

Nonetheless, with the amount of stresses that this life has to offer, the human psychology is strained by various mental ailments. From this, one can deduce that in order to have a healthy mental health, he or she must know how depression can be avoided, or what activities can actually help prevent it from even happening.

One of the more fun and novel ways is adopting or keeping a dog.

dog psychologist

Backed up by research, loving these furry friends can actually promote good mental health. They come with a wide array of powerful mental benefits each worth taking note of.

Nurtures Social Interaction

Dogs are valuable beings that connect people socially. They can be considered as social magnets which extremely helpful for a distressed person. These beings give a sense of comfort and company which can never be truly replaced, especially if a person is an innate dog lover.

According to researches, people with pets are generally happier, more trusting, and less lonely than those who don’t have pets. They also visit the doctor less often for minor problems. The same case applies to that of a person who is prone of being depressed.

Researchers  from University of Western Australia, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and the WALTHAM Centre for Pet Nutrition surveyed nearly 2,700 people from Perth, Australia; San Diego, California; Portland, Oregon; and Nashville, Tennessee and concluded that being a pet owner was the third most common way that survey respondents said they met people in their neighborhoods. (No. 1 was by being neighbors; no. 2 was by using local streets and parks.) Pet owners were 60% more likely than non–pet owners to get to know people in their neighborhoods they hadn’t known before.

dog and children

Dog owners, more specifically those who walked their dogs, are also far more likely to have been reported befriending someone they met through a pet-related connection or getting social support from them. Many other researches indicated the same results, as having dogs can ultimately induce a sense of excitement with regards to social interaction.

Teaches Responsibility and Structures Maturity

It is evident in dogs that they give a sense of belongingness and loyalty to those who they grow up with. For those who have children, this lovable dog trait is an amazing way to culture a sense of responsibility to the young ones. As the dogs require much love and attention, most dogs (if not all), regardless of size and breed, are capable of inflicting injury to people when treated otherwise by their owners. (As such, it is just proper for dog owners to be on high alert of any danger, especially around children.)

The responsibility of taking care of another living thing gives an individual a heightened awareness and purpose, preparing the owner for future obligations and other serious duties. Feed them with high fiber and natural foods. Ensure they are healthy by giving them pet supplements and dog probiotics. Spend time with them regularly.

Eventually, when done correctly, the strong relationship created between pet and owner brings an indescribable feeling that makes owning a dog at home worthwhile.

Similarly, caring for a dog teaches children to be more thoughtful of others. Children learn to be more compassionate and empathic through the regular care for these cuddly companions. Since pets are never critical and ever loyal, the young ones develop a connection on how it is to be respectful and amiable to others.

dog and shoes

More often than not, dogs also showcase a strong bond similar to love that the mere presence of their owners at home already provides them comfort and security. In turn, they show the same strong behavior and a sense of independence to those who could emulate them (i.e. children). Having an ever-present dog can help ease separation anxiety in children when mom and dad aren’t around.

Having the love and companionship of a loyal dog can make a child feel important and help him or her develop a positive self-image.

Overall, these benefits from dogs can nurture a child to become a more mature and responsible adult in the future.

Lightens up mood to avoid depression

With millions of people diagnosed with this mental ailment, depression is considered as one of the most dangerous (yet underrated) diseases worldwide. It is a common mental disorder that causes people to experience self-defeating emotions, loss of interest or pleasure, feelings of guilt or low self-worth, disturbed sleep or appetite, low energy, and poor concentration.

Considering their energetic disposition, dogs can reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, ease loneliness, and encourage exercise and playfulness.

While most dog owners are clear about the immediate joys that come with sharing their lives with their canine companions, many remain unaware of the physical and mental health benefits that can also accompany the pleasure of playing with or snuggling up to a furry friend.

dog hug

More than any other animal, dogs have evolved to become acutely attuned to humans and their behavior and emotions. While dogs are able to understand many of the words people use, they’re even better at interpreting tone of voice, body language, and gestures.

Also, like any good human friend, a loyal dog looks into his master’s eyes to gauge his or her emotional state and try to understand what a person is thinking and feeling. This creates a stronger emotional connection that is proven to provide relief from the abovementioned mental and emotional disorders.

Ultimately, dogs can provide a novel way to reduce stresses that may induce depression and all the negative effects that comes with it.


Having good mental health is an essential aspect which anyone should really put emphasis on. This is because most of the diseases related to psychology is often deteriorating and may come even as fatal. This is why people should take steps in avoiding and lessening the adverse effects of these psychological ailments.

Definitely, keeping a dog can help improve the mental health of any individual. Research shows that having a dog companion provides a person a wide array of health benefits. From nurturing social interaction to teaching accountability, loyalty and higher level of maturity, owners, and even children, can become more responsible and compassionate in terms of handing themselves and growing to be mentally stronger.

It has been proven that dogs provide a lighter ambience and less-stressful aura in practically every situation of human life. This helps lessen, if not completely avoid, the signs of depression. Ultimately, the pet-owner relationship instills and reinforces a bond that leads anyone to become a better version of themselves.

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